travel tips, tourism & vacations
Did you know: World’s largest urban forest is in Rio de Janeiro

Did you know: World’s largest urban forest is in Rio de Janeiro

September 23, 2012

An urban forest is a forest that grows within a city, town or suburb. Urban forests play an important role in human habitats and ecology: they filter air, water, sunlight, provide shelter to animals and recreational area for people.We are sure you are familiar with the idea of urban forests (or in a narrower sense – city forest park), but what you probably didn’t know is that the world’s largest urban forest is in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Tijuca Forest, or the Tijuca National Park, is a mountainous hand-planted rainforest in the city of Rio de Janeiro. Its area is some 32 square km. As a comparison, one of the most well known city parks, Central Park in New York City, is only 3.4 square km.

The forest moderates local climate, and helps in protecting Rio’s water supplies. Tijuca is the home for hundreds of species of plants and wildlife, many threatened by extinction. The Forest contains a number of attractions specific to Rio de Janeiro, most note-worthy the colossal sculpture of Christ the Redeemer on top of Corcovado mountain. Some other attractions are the Cascatinha Waterfall, the Mayrink Chapel or the giant granite picnic table called the Mesa do Imperador.

As Tijuca Forest acts a a natural boundary between west, north and south of Rio de Janeiro, visiting this park requires you get to Rio, of course. February is a great but busy period as you will find yourself in the well known Rio Carnival, where the party never stops. Rio de Janeiro has a well developed air transportation hub, so finding flights to this destination should not be an issue. Great accommodation deals can be found on TripEconomy where you can search and compare rates for Rio de Janeiro hotels.